The Manual of Espionage According to The Great Nim

Second Edition

By Nimitz Fitzlionheart and Timber Howligan

Introduction by Horgan Holloway

Some instructional books are like stale, leftover liverwurst that you find in the bottom of your freezer. You thaw it out, pry it open, and try to take a bite. You’re eager to absorb the knowledge that comes with the morsel, but you just can’t make yourself swallow.

Then there’s this book. Even before the fresh glaze applied by new author Timber Howligan, every chapter went down like candied bacon. With the collaboration and blessing of the mysterious Great Nim, the second edition offers a gourmet feast of espionage expertise for potential agents of both two- and four-footed varieties.

Grab a grappling hook and dig in.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction to a Life of Adventure

So you think you want to be a spy.

I’ll give you the most important advice up front: don’t ask your parents.

If you are truly ready for a life of Mystery and Adventure, you will need:

  • Courage (You don’t have to be the bravest)
  • Quick wits (You don’t have to be the smartest)
  • Strength (You don’t have to be the strongest)
  • Speed (You don’t have to be the fastest)
  • The ability to defend yourself
  • The ability to fend for yourself

Things you do not need:

  • An allowance
  • Car keys
  • A gun

Although it is not necessary, I cannot advise against a can-opener.

On my first mission, I discovered that most of being a Cat of Mystery and Adventure comes down to staying alive. So if you can find water, catch a mouse, and hole up in a dry spot during a storm, you’ve mastered Outdoor Survival Skills.

The rest of my exciting life depends on picking the right Adventure. I recommend starting off with a solo mission such as performing reconnaissance on the neighbor’s dog, or obtaining a simple bowl of milk, before progressing to something more complicated such as infiltrating a Russian dog-napping caper. That should only be attempted by the most advanced Secret Agent Cat, and even then, results are not guaranteed.

Chapter 3: The Language of Espionage

Reconnaissance – An inspection, investigation, or scouting expedition undertaken to gather intelligence.

Intelligence – Information related to the mission

Surveillance – Similar to reconnaissance, but also applies to the situation where one is shadowing (following) a suspect. Any time you are watching, you are surveilling. Don’t let anyone tell you that “surveilling” is not a word.

Mission – The primary assignment or task to be completed. Anything can be a mission–getting a snack, taking a bath. It’s all about your attitude.

Agent – A representative of an Agency. If the nature of the agency is secretive, one can be known as a Secret Agent.

Weapon – An implement of destruction exterior to one’s body (for example, a gun—not teeth or claws)

Arsenal – A collection of weapons or things that can be used as weapons. Be creative–bottle caps, acorns, paper clips, whatever you have available.

Espionage – The activities related to spying for the use of gathering secret information

Spy – An agent whose job is to obtain secret information

Double agent – A spy who works for two competing agencies and supplies information about one to its rival. Generally good to have on your side; bad to have working against you.

Defect – To reject your homeland in favor of another country

Ally – A friend. Purrr.

Enemy – Grr. Hisss.

Chapter 10: Why Cats Make Better Spies Than Dogs

  1. Dogs can be trained to do everything you tell them. But the problem is, they ONLY do what you tell them. This is great, if everything always goes according to plan. Which of course it does, right?
  2. Two words: High ground. Cats can get there, dogs can’t.
  3. Two more words: Retractable claws. Ever hear a dog try to sneak up on someone on a linoleum floor?
  4. Another word on retractable claws: They stay sharp.
  5. Survival skills: Cats have them, dogs don’t. The domesticated cat still hunts mice, the domesticated dog hunts tennis balls.
  6. Regulating appetites. Let’s be honest, dogs will eat the entire bag of dog food if you leave it in front of them. Cats can be trusted with a week’s worth of food and will make sure it lasts the whole week. Enough said.
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